Vidya Ram, the 27-year-old daughter of N. Ram, the editor-in-chief of The Hindu, has been designated the top student in the Class of 2007 of the Graduate School of Journalism of Columbia University, New York.
Vidya topped the list of 28 honours studnts in the school’s Master of Studies (MS) programme. She was also awarded a Pulitzer travelling fellowship, which is given to five outstanding graduates to enable them to study and travel abroad. Vidya plans to use the fellowship to travel to, and write about, China.
“Vidya’s classmates gave her a big round of applause when the school announced that she was the student of the year… It is very rare for a foreign student to win top honours at the school,” said a story in today’s edition of The Hindu.
More than 250 MS students took their degrees along with Vidya at the May 16 convocation of one of the world’s premier journalism schools. Ben Bradlee, vice-president at large of The Washington Post, gave the commencement address.
Vidya’s father Ram is an alumnus of the Columbia University journalist. She studied at Sishya, Madras; Oxford University; and the London School of Economics before going to Columbia. She spent a year teaching English in Harbin, China; interned at Frontline magazine in 2001-02, and subsequently worked tht Hansard Society in London.